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January 2009








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Western region bloggers

Leslie AllenLeslie Allen
Reno, Nevada

I was born in California, and have fond memories of homegrown tomatoes and freshly caught crawdads. My family moved a lot when I was growing up. I even lived on the East coast for a while. More about Leslie

Laura SolorioLaura Solorio
Salinas, California

I am third in a line of strong Yaqui women. My grandmother was from Baja California, from the town of Santa Rosalia. She came to the United States as a young woman, with her first child, escaping an abusive husband. More about Laura

Scott SwendsenScott Swendsen
Boise, Idaho

I am in my late 40's and single and a bit selfish. Having no children and no spouse has allowed me to pretty much explore life in a much different way than most families would. More about Scott

Paulette ThompsonPaulette Thompson
Seattle, Washington

I, P. Thompson, also known as Paulette, love food. It should not surprise you that I love to cook and eat good food. I also love talking about it, thinking about it, and reading about it. More about Paulette



< Locavore? Say yeah! | Main | Floods >

Food, not grass

Posted at 11:54 AM on January 5, 2009 by Laura Solorio (5 Comments)

I thought I had entered my last blog, but we have a few more days. As a start to 2009, in an effort to increase my consumption of local food, I called my favorite local nursery, Bokay Nursery, for some help in redesigning my sprinkler system in the back yard. I want to replace my grass with a bigger vegetable garden. The big problem, though, is the cucuya grass. Most people roll their eyes and tell me that I have to use an herbicide. I don't like using any pesticides or herbicides in my garden. It's a haven for the birds and I have a dog. Everyone tells me that herbicides are safe, but I don't want to use any commercial products. Does anyone have any advice on how to get rid of or help to control cucuya grass?

Mil gracias, and this time spelled correctly: Prospero Ano Nuevo!!

Comments (5)

What's cucuya grass?

Posted by P. Thompson | January 5, 2009 7:35 PM

I don't know about cucuya grass specifically but you could do a layering system of (from the bottom up) cardboard, mulch or dirt, plants. According to the book The Urban Homestead (I think that's where I read it) the grass/plant you are trying to eradicate mulches under the cardboard and eventually the cardboard breaks down.

Something to research and try possibly. :)

Posted by Laura | January 6, 2009 10:39 AM

Hi Laura,
You have Kikuyugrass, and it is very difficult to control because it grows via rhizomes. A heavy layer of organic mulch may not work, the rhizomes grow horizontally along the ground and may grow out from beneath the mulch. Below is a link to a UC Davis publication that describes a variety of control measures. Looks like the best non-chemical control is landscape fabric mulch. You can easily build a raised bed on top of the landscape fabric.

You could also try solarizing your soil. This you will have to do in the summer when the sun is at its hottest.

Good luck!


Posted by Leslie | January 7, 2009 11:45 AM

Thanks so much for your helpful comments. Paulette, Leslie left a comment with the correct spelling and the issues involved. It's like crab grass which is extremely hardy and very difficult to eradicate.

Paulette, it's been great reading your blogs and getting to know you! Have a wonderful new year and perhaps our paths will cross again one day!


Posted by Laura Solorio | January 8, 2009 5:51 PM

We made it! We've blogged for a year. There are things I wish I had done better. Besides that, I am glad that I had a chance to connect with you and the other bloggers.
I do hope we meet some day.


Posted by P. Thompson | January 9, 2009 7:15 PM